As already mentionned earlier concerning the general organisation principles of a conditioning unit, "Regulations require the creation or the standardising of a processing unit, of dispatch for the marketing of shellfish and fishery products. In general, they must follow the standards of the European Directive of July 15, 1991 91/492/CCE".
In the following lines we will briefly explain the materials used for the various stages of fish processing/conditioning.
Two slaughtering methods are used in general, either electric shock, or thermal shock.
The electrocution machine
For this type of equipment, the fish are laid out on a stainless steel grid where they are electrocuted instantaneously without the series being broken. The power supply is produced by 4 low intensity transformers and it is possible to regulate the power.
The grid is made from stainless steel and the racks from PVC.
Width : 0.82 m
Length : 1.5 m
Height : 0.90 m
Weigh : 46 kg
Many models of various shapes and sizes are used. However these trays must meet hygiene standards and their maintenance must be faultless. To kill them, the fish are plunged into water which is below 0° C causing instantaneous death of the animal but preserving the presentation quality (bright skin, sharp eyes etc...) and its good conservation.
The fish are then stored in hard PVC vats, with ice in bars, granules, flakes or even as liquid (see the section headed Thermique).
Conditioning is carried out in high resistance vats allowing cranage or transport by forklift. They are also equipped with a drain plug.
Vats of an average capacity are also used and allow a more manual handling.
Fish dispatch cases
Polystyrene dispatch cases
In addition to the quality of the packaging which is required for agroalimentary products including the refridgeration procedure, the sea and aquaculture products will be well protected from any heat by the isothermal capacities of polystyrene. Moreover, the stocks of packaging make it possible to deal with unforeseen fishing arrivals. There is a very wide range of isothermal cases. For every 5, 6, 10, 25 kg of conditioning, there are palletizable models. They can also be personalized (with a logo, product, standard etc...), the cost is relatively low for large quantity purchases. However, transport and stacking are factors which should be taken into account.
Dispatch case of waterproof cardboard
With regard to hygiene, the materials used conform with European regulations.
With regard to the environment, the cardboard is 100 % recyclable and the packaging can easily form part of the recycling of the paper and cardboard after use.
As the material is not thick, economy in transport and storage is possible, while ensuring the insulating characteristics necessary for the transport of fresh sea and aquaculture produce.
Its main attribute is the fact that it can be printed on and can become an ideal communication tool to draw attention to the fish section.
The capacities can go from 7 litres corresponding to approximately 3 kg of fish up to 30 litres for 10 to 15 kg.
The palletization of these cases is safe nowadays, tests have proved their resistance and their design at the corners makes it possible for them to absorb heavy loads.